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Christiane Dorion is an award-winning author and educational consultant. She has written a number of children’s books about the natural world and has worked with WWF and other environmental organisations for over 30 years.
On scooping the Best Book with Facts Award at the Blue Peter Book Awards 2022 Christiane said: 'I am thrilled to win the Blue Peter Book Award amongst so many fantastic books. The fact that it is judged by children makes it even more special, as they are the best critics. I would say to children, read about what you enjoy. Whether it’s stepping into an imaginary world of wizards or learning all about amazing creatures or tropical jungles, books help us to understand the world around us and stimulate our curiosity and imagination. They can be funny, informative and inspiring. If you find books daunting, you don’t have to read it from beginning to end in one go. You can dip in and out, look at the pictures and go for the bits of text you find most interesting.'
"I was born in a beautiful part of the world, Quebec City, Canada. From a very young age, I was passionate about the environment and writing books for children has always been my dream. I studied geography at university and then completed a Masters Degree in Education. For four years, I lectured at Laval University, working with primary schools and introducing teacher trainees to geography and environmental issues. In 1987, I obtained a scholarship to carry out a PhD in environmental education in the UK and England became my new home. When I completed my PhD, the National Curriculum was being developed for schools in England and Wales and I was asked to contribute to the guidelines for environmental education. For eight years, I coordinated the Primary Education programme at WWF-UK, producing educational resources and working with schools to implement environmental education. In 2002, I left WWF and became an educational consultant and writer. I currently work with Forum for the Future, a non- profit organisation with a mission to promote sustainable development with business and the public sector. My main role is to assess and to help with the ongoing development of the Masters programme on Leadership for Sustainable Development.
"My passion for writing children’s books stems from the thousands of questions I asked as a child, which remained, unanswered. How big is the universe? When did life begin? Why do volcanoes erupt? Why do we build cities around active volcanoes? Why isn’t there water everywhere around the world? Through my books, I aim to inspire and encourage children to explore the complex systems of the world we live in and to take positive actions to protect our planet for future generations. I am particularly interested in how we can learn to design and make things in a different way so we can use the earth’s resources more wisely and reduce the amount of waste we produce. I am also very interested in how we can learn from nature and our fellow creatures to turn waste into precious resources."
(Biography taken from the author's website - click here to visit.)
I can’t imagine why such an informative book hasn’t been written before! Looking at how the animal kingdom builds its homes and the ways this has influenced people to look at new construction methods and ways of living. A simple but fascinating story plays out here arranged into five different areas – looking at construction methods, the materials used, the shapes that nature produces, energy use and water use – all vitally important topics in modern construction. Animals and insects covered include the well-studied bee, termites, and coral as well as the wonderfully named Diabolical Ironclad beetle. Light is explored through the peacock and energy through the prairie dog and the tree. Who knew that the camel was fast becoming more famous for the way it’s nose works - by condensing the vapour it breathes out back into water and keeping it within its body? Or that this technology could now be used to help deserts bloom? This is a fascinating look at all sorts of animal builders and their legacies to us – arranged in such a way that it can be dipped into or read cover to cover. The bright illustrations and text blocks provide lots of information in a very accessible format. As is always vital in a book like this a detailed contents page and index help students find what they are looking for and a fun quiz finishes off the read. A book that will be used again and again.
Winner of the Blue Peter Awards 2022 Best Books with Facts | An international best-seller, translated into 25 languages Often human scientists try and solve a problem or invent a new tool and they realise that animals have already invented it for them. In this book you will meet the animal inventors who have shared their super inventing powers to make amazing things for humans.
Winner of The English Association 2013 Prize (Non-Fiction 7-11) Do you ever wonder where your clothes come from? Or how we make chocolate? This interactive guide is filled with pop ups, pull-tabs and booklets to explain exactly how we make stuff! This is the third title in the award-winning How it Works series and the first title in the series, How The World Works, won the prestigious Royal Society Young People's Book Prize.
When will it next snow? This hands-on guide with opening flaps and pop-ups gives masses of information about how different weather conditions come about. Where does rain come from? Why does the wind blow? What is a climate? Answers to these and more are packed into visually entertaining spreads which are full of information.
Winner of the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize. Click here to see How the Weather Works by the same author. A fully interactive guide to different aspects of the workings of the world. The story of the water cycle pops up in the most exciting and unusual way. The carbon cycle is explained in pictures, diagrams, folds outs and by measuring the carbon footprint of a many-layered hamburger. There is masses of information in this book and it is all presented in a way that makes finding out fun. Christiane Dorion on winning the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize: “I am honoured and thrilled to have won such a prestigious award and would like to thank the Royal Society, as well as all the children who were involved in the judging process. Children are the best judges and to have been selected by them is a fantastic recognition for an author. Reading their comments, it is truly uplifting to see how interactive pop-up books about the planet we live on still have a place in our high-tech digital world.” Sir Paul Nurse, President of the Royal Society, on the prize, which is judged by junior judging panels made up of over 1000 young people from across the UK and Commonwealth: “Science captured my imagination as a child, from exploring the minutiae of the natural world on my walk to school to chasing Sputnik as it blazed across the night sky. Brilliant science books also have the potential to do this and completely change children’s understanding of the world around them. We believe that by involving the young in the judging of the Royal Society Young People’s Books Prize we can help to inspire them with the joys of science, whilst also ensuring that the winner is chosen by those best qualified to judge, the readers themselves.” Other awards: Winner of the Best Overall Information Book in the Scholastic Education PLUS Read Me/ Best Books competition. Shortlisted for the SLA (School Library Association) Information Book Award. Shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award 2011: Best Book with Facts.